THE British cyclist who crossed the line first in Paris yesterday did not win the Tour de France, experts stressed last night.
Across Britain viewers cheered and shouted 'up yours you froggy bastards' as Mark Cavendish sprinted ahead of the pack, only to discover that he actually came 131st.
Margaret Gerving, from Guildford, said: "Oh. Really? But I thought… really? How?"
Tom Logan, from Newark, added: "What the hell are you talking about?"
Cycling analyst Wayne Hayes explained that the race has actually been going on for about eight months, taking in 14 different countries and involving a complicated series of time trials and going up very steep hills really slowly.
He said: "Mark Cavendish won 10 of the 198 stages but lost a lot of time because he kept coming to a complete standstill and then falling over halfway up a mountain."
According to Hayes the winner was the person who finished all the little bits put together in the shortest time without taking an elaborate cocktail of steroids disguised as a tub of Petit Filou.
He added: "The winner now has to wear a yellow jersey for a whole year, although it's not really a jersey, it's more of a zip-up lycra cardigan on backwards."
Earlier Italian cyclist Franco Pellizotti was crowned King of the Mountains, Britain's Bradley Wiggins was King of the Fields and Streams, and Hanuman, the Hindu demi-god, was named King of the Monkeys.
American Lance Armstrong put in a stunning performance at the age of 37 to finish third, with many saying he would have won for a record 36th time if his bicycle did not have cancer.
The race was won by some Spanish chap called Juan, or possibly 'Manuel'.